I’ll start off by saying this post isn’t about beer. Although my passion is beer I am always fascinated and intrigued by artisans who hand craft things, from furniture to spirits. I am also fiercely loyal to my hometown of the North Shore and when I learned about what Ken and Yumiko Hirata were crafting in a small building just down the street from where I went to elementary school, I had to check it out.
Hawaiian Shochu Company is one of only two shochu producers in the United States. Chances are you’ve never heard of shochu. It’s not very popular outside of Japan, where it is more commonly consumed than sake. The clear spirit is made from sweet potatoes and is distilled, unlike sake which is only brewed.
The Hirata’s have a very unique and inspiring story on the long journey they took to get their business up and running. The process of creating their shochu is very hands on and labor intensive. Currently they are only able to distill two batches a year yielding about 5,000 to 6,000
Source: Beer in Hawaii
Read the full article here.